Jazz notes: Center Derrick Favors sidelined again with hip injury
Jazz notes • Team’s leading rebounder sits out third straight game and seventh in the last 13.
Published: February 22, 2014 08:11PM
Updated: February 23, 2014 08:58AM

The Jazz played without center Derrick Favors again Saturday night.

Favors missed his third straight game — and seventh in the last 13 — when Utah faced Minnesota at EnergySolutions Arena.

Favors has been struggling with a sprained hip, which he initially injured on Jan. 17.

In his pregame meeting with the media, Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin repeated there is no timetable for Favors’ return.

“We want to make sure now that we get him healthy so he can come back and be with us the rest of the season — hopefully,” Corbin said. “... He tried to come back and practice a few days [ago] and it just didn’t get better.”

Problem?

Starting Monday against Boston, the Jazz play eight games in 13 nights. They don’t have more than one day between games until March 19-22.

“I hope with this rest, he’ll get healthy,” Corbin said. “We need him to be out on the floor with us.”

Favors averages 12.9 points. He leads the Jazz in rebounds (9.0) and blocked shots (1.37) and is their best interior defender.

In the six previous games Favors missed because of his hip injury, Utah allowed an average of 101.7 points in losses to Minnesota, Golden State, the L.A. Clippers, Toronto, Brooklyn and Portland.

Asked what the Jazz needed to do to beat Minnesota, Corbin said, “We have to make sure we transition baskets against them. They try to push the pace ... so we have to control the tempo of the game.”

Timberwolves’ triage

The Timberwolves played the Jazz without their top two centers, Nikola Pekovic and Rony Turiaf.

Pekovic missed his 11th straight game because of an ankle injury. Turiaf is out indefinitely after suffering a bruised knee in Wednesday’s 104-91 win over Indiana.

In two victories over the Jazz earlier this season, Pekovic averaged 22.5 points and 11.5 rebounds. He went 19-for-31 from the field.

“He’s a load in there,” Corbin said. “You look at his career and I think he’s [taken] about 14 or 15 shots outside the paint. ... Everybody knows he’s a close-to-the-rim scorer, but they can’t stop him because of his size and his strength.”

Said Minnesota coach Rick Adelman: “Pek’s stats are pretty impressive and we have to find a way to make up for that.”

With Pekovic and Turiaf sidelined, Adelman was forced to start a small lineup against the Jazz. Dante Cunningham opened at power forward, with All-Star Kevin Love moving to center.

The Timberwolves’ only big man off the bench was rookie Gorgui Dieng, who played a total of 209 minutes in their first 54 games.

“Most of the time he’s gotten into games he’s been in foul trouble,” Adelman said. “ ... [But] he’s going to get minutes so we’re going to find out about him.”